OTS Projects

Outside the Square works with 15 – 20 not-for-profit organizations each year, and the scale of the campaigns range from $5,000 to $20,000 in value. A number of the campaigns have won PRINZ awards, a truly singular achievement for student work. This page offers information about our projects and partners.

Abbeyfield project  ‘Generation Yes’ campaign

OTS-abbey Field

Abbeyfield Auckland is a not-for-profit providing shared housing for senior citizens.  It relies on rent for its income. It has a short waitlist for its 11-room house, representing a financial problem.

To raise awareness of Abbeyfield by creating an event linked to Fashion Week in order to challenge perceptions of seniors, timed for the UN’s International Day of Older Persons.

A fashion show as a response to ageism in the industry, featuring the Abbeyfield tenants – the oldest being 93 - wearing high-profile designer clothing. A national survey that polled 611 people over 50 on age perceptions and a social media campaign featuring ‘New Zealand’s Next Oldest Top Model’.

The campaign received widespread media coverage. Over 400 people attended the show, which was broadcast on 3News. 3000 people viewed the clip on www.tv3.co.nz. The show featured in the Sunday Star Times and several community newspapers as well as the front page of www.stuff.co.nz. The survey story was published by the Weekend Herald, Otago Daily Times and www.nzhearld.co.nz. Several radio stations, blogs and websites here and around the world picked the story up.

The results were Abbeyfield’s website hits increased 50% and it has had many new enquiries as a result of the campaign. It now has a sustainable social media presence and the show’s success means is likely be become an annual event.

Jo Greggains, Scott McKee, Arundathi Manicks, Emma Bryant and Adam Winship

Garden to Table project
Tree Council project

Working closely with Catherine Bell, the founder of the trust, and Nicole, the Project Officer, our strategy was to generate some positive publicity for Garden to Table by organising a media launch leading up to the ‘Feast for the Future’ evening to be held on November 12. Feast for the Future is a fundraising event debuting this year in which 26 of Auckland’s top restaurants donate a portion of their evening’s income to the Trust.
The trendy Soul Bar at the Viaduct sponsored the media event by providing both a location for the event and delicious healthy nibbles. We worked alongside designer Brook Copland to design a logo for the Feast for the Future evening and with Seth Josephs to come up with an invitation design for the event which we sent to targeted media. Catherine and Nicole also invited the chefs participating in Feast for the Future and children who are part of the school programme were invited to speak about their experiences with Garden to Table and to hand around the nibbles. We invited a wide range of media to meet and speak with the chefs. The media launch event was a success with an even balance of media and chefs attending.

We also focused on maintaining and improving Garden to Table’s social media presence. We developed an event page on Facebook inviting people to Feast for the Future which attracted 192 Facebook users confirming attendance to the event. We also  created a Twitter account for Garden to Table with twice-weekly updates about restaurants coming on board with Feast for the Future and any other new information.

In addition to this we have written several media releases and individualised pitches to different media. The response rate has been fabulous. Since the launch we have gained coverage in The Herald on Sunday, Viva and The Auckland City Harbour News to name a few, and numerous food websites such as foodie.co.nz, info.co.nz, foodworks.co.nz localist.co.nz, cateringplus.co.nz, foodandbeveragetoday.co.nz and foodnews.co.nz. are featuring our story.

Imogen Shepherd, Alisha Thomas, Samantha Shoter, Bridget McLaughlin, Jess Rensen

Habitat for Humanity
OTS Habitat

Habitat for Humanity New Zealand worked together with Outside the Square students to raise Habitat’s public profile; raise awareness for National Habitat Awareness week and promote Habitat for Humanity’s Bike and Build 2012 event. After meeting with the client, mentor and brainstorming ideas, it was agreed that an event would be held during National Habitat Awareness Week in October 2011.

It was decided that a cycling event, Cycle with the Stars, would launch National Habitat Awareness Week and promote Bike and Build 2012. Cycle with the Stars comprised of New Zealand celebrities cycling against the public in three minute races to see who could cover the most distance in the given time.

Cycle with the Stars was held on Saturday October 1st at Botany Town Centre. Television star, Blair Strang and Green MP David Clendon, joined in and were the celebrities for the races and raced numerous times against the public and eventually each other. An MC from Base.FM commentated the races and encouraged people passing by to come and take part in the event.

The results of this project are that Cycle with the Stars was featured in the Eastern Courier newspaper, Howick and Pakuranga Times newspaper, and twice in the Challenge Weekly newspaper. New Zealand Road Cyclist agreed to advertise for Bike and Build 2012 in the future free of charge. David Clendon and Bare.PR wrote blogs about Cycle with the Stars online. The event had 42 participants on the event day.

Overall Cycle with the Stars was a success, it exceeded the goals and objectives set for the event and the client, Habitat for Humanity New Zealand, were very happy with the results.

Sarah Campbell, Lizzie Furnell, Eria Roberts, Hayley Morrice, Astrid Van Uden, Michaela Williams

Safekids: preventing driveway accidents

OTS image 4

Following the deaths of three children caught in driveway run over accidents in 2011, a team of AUT communication students put together an awareness campaign to help the Safekids organization prevent these accidents from happening.

Students Jordan Morris, Sophia Berry-Smith, Tanya Rotherham, Emily Paje and Latoya Farrell, organised an event at the Les Mills Kids Club to demonstrate to parent that an entire classroom of children can fit behind a car and not be seen by its driver.

The event included over 40 children and parents from the crèche and received a half page story in Auckland’s Central Leader newspaper.

The team also coordinated a child friendly stand at the Auckland Parent Child Show where children and parents alike were able to enjoy free face painting and meeting the new Safekids mascot, ‘Blindzone Bee’.

Jordan Morris, Sophie Berry-Smith, Latoa Farrell, Emily Paje, Tanya Rotherham

Support Your Roots campaign OTS image

Creativity, innovation and social media were key to the success of the Support Your Roots campaign.

The goal was to increase the awareness of The Tree Council and to show Aucklanders what trees really mean to us. The Outside the Square team leveraged recent changes to the resource management act in order to get the target audiences to engage emotionally with trees.

The campaign launched into action on September 19 when 24 trees in Albert Park were dressed in giant, colourful, stripy pyjamas. This photo call was published in the Aucklander and Auckland City Harbour News as well as on localist.co.nz and stuff.co.nz. The press release was also published on at least fourteen different websites including Yahoo! Xtra, Voxy and Scoop.

Social media was an integral part of the campaign with user interaction and engagement vital to generating significant outcomes. The “Tree Love” photo competition and geo-tagging map were a huge success and allowed New Zealanders to share and protect their favourite trees with the click of a camera.  The photos on The Tree Council’s Facebook page received over 670 likes, as well as a number of significant comments showcasing people’s love of trees.

As a result of the campaign, The Tree Council established a number of important partnerships with organizations and individuals relevant to the cause. Labour list MP Jacinda Ardern attended Pyjamas in the Park and delivered an invaluable speech, thanking The Tree Council and pledging her support.

Gemma Parry, Hannah Mabey, Jermaine Sassman, Sarah Granville and Katrina Hedditch.

Osteoporosis “Better Bones Week” campaign

Twitter image

An Outside the Square team teamed up with Network PR and Osteoporosis New Zealand to help build an exciting and innovative campaign to promote Better Bones Week 2011, (formerly known as Osteoporosis Awareness Week).

Through well targeted PR activities, the campaign aimed to encourage generations of Kiwis to love their bones through

•Building the lifelong habits of getting the recommend calcium intake •Regularly exercising and getting a sensible amount of sunlight to strengthen bone health and to prevent osteoporosis
•Starting these habits early and teaching each generation

To deliver this goal, the OTS team created an extensive campaign with four key activities, Media Engagement, Social Media, Community Engagement and and “Love Your Bones” Family Fun Day Event.

Some of the successful results included:
•Displays of posters and pamphlets about the week were delivered to over 20 libraries
•All calcium-rich yellow top Anchor bottles carried Better Bones Week tags during the relevant week in October.
•A successful Family Fun Day was held at Sir Edmund Hillary Retirement Village, with a baking demonstration of calcium-rich recipes by New Zealand’s hottest home baker, Paula Midgley and an informative presentation on osteoporosis by bone expert Jill Cornish.
•For children there was face-painting, colouring-in competitions and cupcake decorating, as well as many giveaways and treats.
•Media: as well as a traditional media publicity campaign, a twitter account was created with a significant number of followers, and other social media initiatives undertaken.

Kelly Booth, Asher Walker, Bronnie Robertson, Ashleigh Martin, Nicola Monera, Kelsey Hunter.

Takapuna Beach BNZ Night Markets campaign
ots - night market

A team of OTS students worked with the Takapuna Rotary Club and the local business community to launch the Takapuna Beach BNZ Night Market in early September 2011. The summer-long Night Market was well publicised in local media, and students started a lively social media campaign which got many friends and fans. The first market was also attended by a bevy of celebrities as well as visitors to NZ for the RWC.

Ella McIntosh, Nicole Voorburg, Cassia Bennett-Burkhardt, Laura Douglas, Ella Jullienne

Auckland International Carnival

OTS image 2

Working on the Outside the Square project with the Auckland International Carnival has been a huge learning experience.
Our campaign went well and we believe that we achieved the objectives that we set out to when we created our strategic proposal. We feel that we were very successful in promoting the carnival to the local communities. We had extensive coverage in the East & Bays Courier leading up to the event and post event. However it proved difficult to publicise the event to a national audience. The Rugby World Cup and national disasters proved to be an unforeseen obstacle that made media space highly competitive around the time of the event .

Anita Hodgman, Lena-Jean Ganley, Alex de Lisle, Sarah Jane Phillips, Seth Joseph

Previous Projects / Partners

One for the Girls Campaign
One for the Girls

How do you talk with teenage girls about a medical topic that might only affect them in 20 years time?

On behalf of the Auckland District Health Board, six AUT public relations students set out to design and implement a campaign that would be used to educate and motivate 16 to 18 year old girls to be immunised against the Human Papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted infection that causes cervical cancer.

Variety Liberty Swing launch

Variety – The Children’s Charity and the Hamilton City Council launched a $37,000 Variety Liberty Swing for children with disabilities in the Hamilton region.

Safekids Campaign to Prevent Driveway Deaths

Safe Kids Campaign
Alarming statistics on the number of children killed on driveways by reversing vehicles prompted a team of OTS students to plan a PR campaign to raise awareness among parents.

Sir Peter Blake - Clean Up Our Coast

In order to increase exposure to the Sir Peter Blake Trust, Outside the Square was approached and went to work organising the 'Clean up our Coast' campaign.

Leukaemia and Blood Foundation - ‘vision to cure, mission to care’
Leukaemia and Blood Foundation

The Leukaemia and Blood Foundation (LBF) is New Zealand’s only charity dedicated solely to the care and cure of patients and families living with leukaemia and related blood conditions. The LBF receives no government funding and relies heavily on fundraising activities to support their aims and objectives.

Lunch for Leukaemia had been a lacklustre fundraising tool for the LBF, and Outside the Square was given the task of revitalising it.

Dress for Success
Dress for Success – Relationship Rejuvenation

The Outside the Square Team, known as Chic Five Communications - Beccy-Ellen McGregor, Gemma Jelicich, Juliet Forde, Kate Webby and Sarah Hitchings, teamed up with Dress for Success Auckland to bring a fresh outlook and innovative ideas to a Communication Campaign.

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity
A team from OTS organised a nationwide online photography competition based on the global theme of “A Place to Be” for their client, the not-for-profit organisation, Habitat for Humanity. The competition was divided into four categories; primary (Under 12s), secondary (13-17 years), tertiary (18-24 years) and an open category (18+ years).

Diabetes Auckland

Diabetes Auckland approached Outside the Square (OTS) with the concept of ‘Walking with the Stars’; a fun, family-orientated event to conclude National Diabetes Awareness Week (20-26 November).

Alzheimer’s New Zealand: the “No Time to Lose” hill challenge.

Alzheimer's New Zealand
Five students worked with Alzheimer’s NZ to come up with a completely novel and media-attractive event to draw attention to a disease which touches many lives and many families. Their “No Time to Lose” Hill Challenge took place on Sunday the 24th of September on Auckland’s One Tree Hill. The aim of the event was to challenge people to use their imagination and come up with a weird and wacky way of reaching the summit of One Tree Hill – and as the photos show –they certainly succeeded!

Childfund – Give Us a Hand campaign

In an effort to raise awareness of Childfund (child welfare agency) - an Outside the Square team organised a unique event-based campaign which received much positive feedback.

Down Syndrome Buddy Walk

Down Syndrome Walk
A fun walk and carnival was the request of the Auckland Down Syndrome Association (ADSA). With this challenge in mind, ADSA handed over full ownership for the inaugural New Zealand Buddy Walk to Shannon Green, Michael Allen, Victoria Blackman and Leah Evans.

Last updated: 25-Oct-2016 4.33pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.